Summer is here, so whether you’re at the beach, pool or just hanging out at home, you’ll want to make sure you’re keeping cool and well hydrated. Water is an essential nutrient that serves many functions in our bodies, like regulating temperature, protecting the spinal cord, cushioning and lubricating joints, keeping skin hydrated as well as for waste removal.1
So how much should you drink? The Institute of Medicine recommends healthy adults consume about 13- 8oz glasses of fluid every day for men and about 9- 8 oz glasses of fluid every day for women.2 Keep in mind that this recommendation is for fluid which includes the water found in other beverages (like milk, juice, and coffee) as well as some fruits and vegetables (like celery, watermelon, and tomatoes).
To replenish your fluids follow the tips below:
Hydrate by the cup:
- Choose water as the “beverage of choice”. It’s calorie-free and refreshing. Freeze a water bottle to keep it cold for a car ride or short trip. Be prepared by keeping a cooler of ice and water bottles in your car trunk for summertime outings.
- Need fizz? Try seltzer or club soda — plain or flavored varieties
- Limit the amount of caffeinated beverages like soft drinks, energy drinks and iced tea. These may cause the body to lose water through frequent urination.
- Don’t wait until you are thirsty. Instead make drinking fluids more appealing by infusing your water.
- Add fresh squeezed lime juice and torn mint leaves
- Cucumber slices with frozen or fresh melon cubes
- Slices of grapefruit, lemons or oranges
- Add frozen or fresh peach chunks with fresh torn basil leaves.
Hydrate at the plate:
- Make popsicles out of pureed fruit and ice. Freeze in molds or ice trays for a fun and refreshing snack.
- Summer is the season for water-rich fruits and vegetables. Try watermelon, cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers, carrots or even snap peas with low-fat dressing.
- Cut fruit, like pineapple or mango, into bite size chunks and store in the freezer in small freezer bags. They make a great snack for the outdoors or while you’re on the run.